Kinnie Starr Joins the Circus

Kinnie Starr Joins the Circus
Kinnie Starr will be starring in a new Cirque de Soleil production, which she describes as "an erotic cabaret," which opens on July 31 in Las Vegas for a two-year run. "I'm hoping it will be educational," she says during a break in rehearsals in Montreal. "I'm plugging into something, which is the whole reason I took the job, to learn about other people's approaches to melody and arrangements. I've always been pretty interested in other forms of expression."

Complicating matters for the Vancouver singer, who built her unique rep on combining dubby hip-hop beats with electric guitars and multilingual politics, is the fact that she's just about to release her third album, Sun Again. "I was concerned, and for a while I was literally pulling my hair out," Starr admits. "My label was so encouraging and supportive, and there were so many people in the industry who said that this is far better for my career than touring. Touring reaches people, but there are better ways to reach people. I'm trying to get my head around that concept, because I've been touring for seven years."

Sun Again is her first album since 2000's Tune-Up, which itself was a comeback record after years of relentless touring and major label wrangling. Of the past three years, Starr explains, "What took up a lot of time was me not wanting to do music anymore. That lasted at least a year. My bandmates really wanted me to keep making music. I was at a crossroads. I had lost confidence in myself. I wasn't sure if I wanted to be up there on stage trying to prove how cool I was every night. I needed to figure out if I wanted to do music as a full-time thing. I love making music. It's the whole process of selling yourself and competing. I had to find the love in it again. I feel really different about it now."